Côte d’Ivoire has experienced significant rainfall over the last week, leading to hopes of an early start to the main cocoa season that normally begins in October and lasts until March.
The hope from farmers now is that this weather trend will continue for another month or two, which will boost cocoa pods size and yields.
The good weather is a relief against the backdrop of sub-optimal temperatures and lack of precipitation over the previous weeks that was making farmers nervous.
In one growing region, Daloa, 51.4 (mm) of rain fell recently, almost double the average they would expect.
The country’s cocoa farmers deserve some good news after a challenging period in which global demand has slumped because of the pandemic, and chocolate companies have been finding ways to avoid paying the regular premiums.
Currently, the farmers are happily planning for a first harvest as early as mid-September, although the cautious among them point out that rain is only one part of the equation, and they still need the sun. Without enough sunshine and heat, the pods will get waterlogged, which can lead to disease.
However, for the moment, having rain after the drought is a blessing.